NEWS

'Before They Pass Away' By Photographer Jimmy Nelson Documents Disappearing 'Lost Tribes' (PICTURES)

04/11/2013 15:47 | Updated 05 November 2013

These stunning portraits are part of a landmark project titled 'Before They Pass Away' by photographer Jimmy Nelson.

The British photographer aimed to capture the lives and traditions of the last surviving tribes who have managed to preserve their traditional ways and customs within our increasingly globalised world.

The epic portraits present these dignified inheritors of noble and age-old traditions in a proud spirit and in all their glory—a unique visual experience.

before they pass away by jimmy nelson

The Ladakhi of India. Before They Pass Away by Jimmy Nelson, is published by teNeues, www.teneues.com. Photo by Jimmy Nelson Pictures BV, www.beforethey.com

This exquisitely photographed showcase for world tribal culture is not only a joy to look at, but also an important historical record.

Nelson told CNN: "The whole idea is to make (the tribes) iconic. To give them the attention that we give ourselves in the developed world.

"Africa is evolving the quickest in my opinion. It has lost the majority of its ethnicity and authenticity.

before they pass away by jimmy nelson

The Goroka of Papua New Guinea. Before They Pass Away by Jimmy Nelson, is published by teNeues, www.teneues.com. Photo by Jimmy Nelson Pictures BV, www.beforethey.com

"I grew up in Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Gabon and in Cameroon. I've been living for 45 years, and what I saw in my childhood is not there anymore."

The mammoth project was not always an easy ride. One tribe refused to pose for photos and instead insisted he drink vodka with them.

Nelson eventually agreed, got incredibly drunk and peed himself in a teepee.

before they pass away by jimmy nelson

The Tsaatan (reindeer people) of northern Mongolia. Before They Pass Away by Jimmy Nelson, is published by teNeues, www.teneues.com. Photo by Jimmy Nelson Pictures BV, www.beforethey.com

Before he knew it a herd of reindeer had trampled the teepee down, attracted by the salt in his urine.

He told the Daily Mail: "At the beginning the Tsaatan people were absolutely livid. But by making a complete plonker of myself and becoming the laughing stock of the group, they finally began to open up."

'Before They Pass Away', By Jimmy Nelson

Suggest a correction
Comments

CONVERSATIONS